Postcard from Harvard Square

Still in Harvard, although I’ll be taking the last bus down to the Manchester airport tonight for my 7am flight back to Chicago tomorrow.

The weather took a definite turn for the better on Monday… The clouds cleared and the sun peeked through. But, I didn’t get to enjoy all that. Haha, instead, I’d plonked myself down at the bookstore and read the entire Book 5 of Harry Potter… Sat there for seven hours straight without once leaving for breakfast, lunch or the restroom…

I did go out that evening though. Ruimin brought Sheryl and I to Chinatown for dinner. We went to this Penang restaurant and had a feast of oyster omelette, fried kway teow, chicken rice and durian freeze. Wow, that meal was a tantalizing taste of what I’ll soon be able to get in Singapore…

I woke up to brilliant sunlight streaming through the windows on Tuesday, and was thrilled by it until I walked out. It was so hot and humid, I almost longed for the cold weather again. Anyways, my plan for that day was actually to have lunch with Sheryl, Ruimin, and this other Singaporean Meiling, who just arrived from Australia to do a year’s research in Harvard Medical School; then head down Newbury St. with Sheryl before we went on the Harvard Summer School’s planned Harbor Cruise. Alas, I couldn’t get tickets to the cruise as I wasn’t a student… no matter really, cos Ruimin offered to bring me out sailing on Boston river instead. 🙂

We met up with everyone for lunch and Ruimin brought us to this one Chinese restaurant near MIT. We ordered a ton of dishes, but surprisingly managed to clean our plates. After that good meal, he brought us on a tour of the MIT campus. Goodness, that was one of the quirkiest places I’ve seen. From the musical instruments down in the train station for commuters to amuse themselves with while they wait for the train, down to the bench ampliflier in a corner of the quads, there were a ton of innovations and cool gadgets awaiting us at every turn. And then there’s the tradition where students try to decorate the huge MIT dome in the stealth of the night. Over the years, they’ve managed to give it huge menacing teeth for Halloween’s, lope it with the ring from Lord of the Rings, and… put on it a police car, complete with a dummy police officer and all. The best part is – even as the school threatens to slap anyone caught on the dome with a $50 fine, it has allowed a photo exhibition series of the stuff that’s been done to the dome – before the police stepped in to take action. Haha.

Anyways, Sheryl had to leave us after the tour to go for her harbor cruise, so Ruimin, Meiling, her brother Victor and I headed down to the MIT sailing shed and took out a boat. Had a great time lounging in the boat, getting a sun tan and staring out lazily at the other sailboats that dotted the St. Charles river and admiring the Boston skyline.

After sailing, I parted company with the rest and took a stroll along the river, with the aim of walking back to Harvard from there. Argh, had no idea it was a 1.5 hour trip. It was much too hot to be doing any serious walking at all, though I did manage to get some splendid views of the city at sunset. Back at Harvard Square, I had a dinner of clam chowder and then went to catch the movie, The Italian Job, before I finally headed back to the dorm to catch up with Sheryl.

Yup, so that’s that for the past two days in Boston – well, Cambridge, rather. I’d hopefully be doing some real touring today and then I’ll be back in Chicago! Hehe, it’s been a relaxing trip, but it’ll be lovely to be back home again. 🙂

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